Historic Magrath Mansion acquired by Concordia University of Edmonton

A historic mansion that had been on the market for more than a year has made history again as the largest individual gift ever received by Concordia University of Edmonton.

Deal includes largest individual gift university has ever received — $1.425 million

Overlooking the North Saskatchewan River, the Magrath Mansion has been a fixture in the Highlands neighbourhood since 1912. (John Robertson/CBC)

A historic Edmonton mansion that had been on the market for more than a year has made history again.

Concordia University of Edmonton announced Wednesday it has acquired the Magrath Mansion from the Braaksma family in a deal that includes the largest individual gift the university has ever received.

The mansion was acquired for $3.175 million.

The university paid $1.75 million and the remainder — $1.425 million  — was a gift from the Braaskma family.

"While real estate donations are common at other post-secondary universities, this is the largest individual gift ($1.425 million) that CUE has received to date," the university said in a news release.

The mansion has stood in the heart of the Highlands neighbourhood since 1912.

"The Magrath Mansion is an important part of Edmonton's history," said Tim Loreman, president and vice-chancellor of the post-secondary institution.

"We are looking forward to inviting our students, faculty, staff and community to learn about the property's history, be inspired by its architecture and continue creating its legacy." 

The stately residence on Ada Boulevard at 62nd Street is less than 10 blocks east of the university campus, which is also on Ada Boulevard.

Sid and Nellie Braaksma purchased the home in 2000 and had done extensive work on it. It had been designated a provincial historic resource in 1975.

The home was listed for $5.25 million in May 2020, one year after Sid Braaksma's death.

Nellie Braaksma said the gift to the university will continue the family's mission to keep the mansion connected to the community. (Adrienne Lamb/CBC)

The property covers five city lots, which the university said would provide ample space for education, research, entertainment and gatherings.

"I am very happy that it will continue to have a  presence and make an impact as part of CUE," Nellie Braaksma said in the news release. 

Concordia University of Edmonton opened in 1921 as a small Lutheran college. In 2015, it was redesignated as an independent university.

The stately Magrath Mansion was listed for $5.25 million in May 2020. (Travis McEwan/CBC)


To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.

Become a CBC Member

Join the conversation  Create account

Already have an account?